Oleksandr Usyk is keen on a fight with former world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, which may well be good news for the proposed super fight between Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury in 2021.
Joshua and Fury hold all the gold at heavyweight and are keen to meet next year to crown a unified champion in the division.
Both sides are working to make the bout happen, but the man holding a spanner and ready to pop it in the works is Usyk, who is the mandatory challenger for Joshua’s WBO title.
The WBO want to force Joshua to fight the Ukrainian, while AJ’s team are keen to postpone the scrap till after Fury, admitting that they will relinquish the title in order to make the bout against the Gypsy King.
That would be a shame for the mammoth all-British clash not to be for all the belts, and it looks like it still could be, with Usyk eyeing up other targets at heavyweight.
The former cruiserweight champion says he has multiple targets in his sights, naming the Bronze Bomber as one in particular.
‘There are a lot of guys who I would like to fight and would be happy to fight, like Deontay Wilder,’ Usyk told the Sun.
Wilder is still pursuing a third fight with Tyson Fury, but a meeting with Usyk could be to decide who faces either Brit later in 2021 or in 2022.
He has already hinted that he may be willing to wait for his shot and not want to be the man who keeps all the heavyweight belts from being unified.
‘All four belts might end up in the same hands of one person,’ he told the Sun. ‘It might be a once in a lifetime opportunity. We should all talk and communicate for that to happen because it is a really big event.
‘I still want to fight Anthony Joshua for the title. There are many factors for this fight to happen, my team and all the participants and all their interested parties are already working on it. But there are still many people who wish to fight him as well, like Tyson Fury.’
On a possible clash with AJ, Usyk says he would want it to take place in the UK, rather than the US or the Middle East.
‘I don’t care where the fight takes place, I will put up a show wherever,’ he said.
‘However, I think Britain would be really cool because they are really great fans and really nice people.’
Usyk’s manager, Egis Klimas, has always stuck to his guns in saying his client want to fight Joshua next and will push for his shot at the WBO belt.
However, he also recognises the situation and accepts that discussions will be held and he will see what happens.
‘We are aiming to fight for the WBO title next and Usyk wants to fight Anthony Joshua and that’s what we are going to do,’ Klimas told Boxing Scene.
‘Look, Oleksandr worked very hard all his life to get into this position, OK? All the amateur career, the gold medal in London Olympics (in 2012), undisputed cruiserweight champion and now having a couple of fights in the heavyweight division. So, he put himself into a position where he is right now and he is in a very, very powerful position today to make it happen or not to make it happen.
‘If I’m gonna say I won’t look into anything I would be a fool. Of course, we have to see what is the best for Oleksandr Usyk.
‘We don’t have to see what is the best for Fury or what is the best for Joshua. They have their teams looking after them. We have to see what is the best for Oleksandr Usyk.’
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